Why is aging a risk factor for contracting COVID 19
August 8, 2022
Living with viruses
So far, I have discussed the hallmarks of lifestyle medicine which are; stress management, exercise, sleep, diet, and specific nutrients. Relationships are also discussed in functional medicine however; they are specific to each individual situation and not easily discussed in this format.
Every day a new variance of COVID 19 develops, and now New York City has declared a public health emergency for monkeypox.
About monkeypox, most of you know the facts, but I want to make sure that the message that you are receiving from the media is correct. Monkeypox is not an airborne virus. It is contracted by close and intimate contact with the person who has the virus. New York City is the epicenter for this outbreak. One recommendation which is not mentioned in the media is, if you are in an area with a high concentration of monkeypox, it would be prudent to wash your hands or use sanitizer frequently throughout the day. The monkeypox virus can be on environmental surfaces. I have not read or found how long it will be a viable on environmental surfaces. It would also be rare to contract the virus in this way however, I believe my recommendation will offer added safety from this virus. This is not an unknown virus and there is a vaccine. The mortality rate is low.
Age is a primary risk factor for many common illnesses, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, neurodegeneration diseases, diabetes, and the risk for infections from bacteria and viruses.
As we age our cells experience repeated cellular damage, followed by a loss in the normal ability to divide and replicate. In the literature this is called senescence. This results in zombie-like cells that can no longer contribute to vital functions including the function of the immune system.
The science of antiaging has developed synthetic anti-senescent agents. These agents protect against aging of cells and retaining their functions. Our focus is the immune system and not anti-aging perse. Research has found many natural anti-senescences such as quercetin and luteolin. Flavonoids found in strawberries, persimmons, apples, grapes, cucumbers, and onions are natural anti-senescents.The evidence for organic non-GMO whole foods for improving general health and rejuvenating our aging immune system is important to understand and a call to improve our diet.